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Monday, December 31, 2012

Daily Political Wire

George Wenschhof

Obama, Clinton, Most Admired - Gallup has released its list of "Most Admired Woman and Most Admired Man" living anywhere in the world, and for the 11th year in a row, Hillary Clinton tops the list of women, while Barack Obama is the most admired man for the fifth year in a row.


Senate Reconvenes at 11:00 AM ET, "Fiscal Cliff" Deal Nears? - the Senate will take up what will hopefully be a deal worked on between Vice President Joe Biden and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.)

The latest details indicate the proposal would have taxes go up for individuals making over $400,000 and families earning more than $450,000.

The possible deal breaker remains the tens of billions of spending cuts, known as the sequester.  If, a a bill passes the Senate, it would still need to be passed by the House. has more here.


Clinton Hospitalized with Clot - Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was hospitalized yesterday after a blood clot was discovered stemming from the concussion she suffered several weeks ago.

She is being treated with anti-coagulants and is at New York-Presbyterian Hospital so that they can monitor the medication over the next 48 hours.

“Her doctors will continue to assess her condition, including other issues associated with her concussion. They will determine if any further action is required.”  The Washington Post has more here.


Senate Report Faults Pentagon, State Department on Benghazi Tragedy - the bipartisan committee found that the State Department failed to appropriately assess and heighten security measures after intelligence showed that Americans stationed in Benghazi could be threatened by terror groups, according to reports from media groups which obtained an advance copy of the findings. The report will be released Monday.

While the committee report acknowledges that there was no specific intelligence pointing to an imminent attack, officials in Washington failed to take “effective steps” to protect the Benghazi facility and the diplomats there. has more here.


Coburn Will Not Vote to Confirm Hagel - yesterday on CBS "Face The Nation", Senator Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) said he would not vote to confirm Chuck Hagel for Defense Secretary if he was nominated by President Obama.

Hagel faces a steep climb, if nominated with Republican opposition likely joined by Democrats soured by Hagel's previous comments pertaining to gays serving as U.S. ambassadors.

President Obama called Hagel "a patriot" when he appeared on NBC "Meet The Press", but indicated he had not made a decision on who he will nominate for Defense Secretary. has more here.


$10 Billion Settlement with Banks on Foreclosure Abuses - Banking regulators are close to a $10 billion settlement with 14 banks that would end the government’s efforts to hold lenders responsible for foreclosure abuses like faulty paperwork and excessive fees that may have led to evictions, according to people with knowledge of the discussions.

The $10 billion pact would be the latest in a series of settlements that regulators and law enforcement officials have reached with banks to hold them accountable for their role in the 2008 financial crisis that sent the housing market into the deepest slump since the Great Depression. As of early 2012, four million Americans had been foreclosed upon since the beginning of 2007, and a huge amount of abandoned homes swamped many states, including California, Florida and Arizona.  The NY Times has more here.


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